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Destructive Testing

Although I'm normally very careful with my gear I seem to have gone through a phase of destructive testing over the last 24 hours. Last night as I was happily cycling along a summery, green lane, I hit a big bump, my phone flew out of my handlebar bag, bounced along the tarmac, and spun along the road before finally coming to a stop. Basically, exactly the same thing as happened to me three years ago and I still haven't learned. Other than suffering from a lot of scrapes and scratches, however, it stayed in one piece, continued working, and seems to have accepted the fact that I occasionally abuse it.

Now today as I was cycling into Helsinki one of my panniers came off as I was crossing a road. Fortunately, it fell off on a pedestrian island, saving it from being hit by a car and thrown into the air. Unfortunately, it had my powerbook in it. I wasn't too worried, however, as I assumed it was safe inside it's big, padded Crumpler bag, which was inside the pannier. When I took it out to check it though I discovered that the Crumpler padding doesn't quite cover the corners of the laptop and one of the corners had taken a big dent. I hesitantly opened it up, as it had been asleep through the whole ordeal, and looked at the screen. It remained dark, but as I increased the contrast it sprung back into life, and seems, thankfully, to be fine. With a little bit of metalworking I managed to squeeze most of the dent out on a wooden table in a cafe, which gained me a few strange looks, and the damage is now hardly noticeable. Overall I'm very impressed with it and can't think of any other laptop that would have survived the impact without a gaping, plastic hole or death.

I shall now attempt to put an end to this period of destructive testing before I get run over by a steamroller or fall out of a plane. But, thumbs up to Nokia and Apple, and thumbs down to Crumpler until they address the flap cover inside their laptop backpacks.

Update: It appears my Powerbook damage is nothing compared to the abuse that some have endured and still work...
PowerBook G4 vs. SUV

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